Tendai Mugabe Harare Bureau
ZANU-PF national commissar Cde Saviour Kasukuwere says the party has no time discussing social media issues in its Politburo meetings, insisting the media was attempting to craft the agenda for the ruling party. Speaking to journalists after meeting the party’s provincial chairpersons and some members of its affiliate organisations in Harare yesterday, Cde Kasukuwere said the party had serious issues to discuss.
His remarks came after the party’s spokesperson Cde Simon Khaya Moyo recently hinted that the use of social media by some party members to abuse others might be up for discussion at the next Politburo meeting set for Wednesday next week.
Organs of the party such as the Youth League have also expressed concern over the abuse of social media, while the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association, which is an affiliate organisation has registered displeasure on the same issue.
Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development Minister Professor Jonathan Moyo has been accused, particularly by the war veterans, of abusing other officials on Twitter. He claims provocation.
Said Cde Kasukuwere: “I’m actually surprised that you make social media an issue. It’s not an issue and we hear you telling us about the Zanu-PF Politburo agenda. You think we meet here to talk about WhatsApp?
“We meet here to discuss about serious business and so stop dragging us into your small issues of the social media. We’ve much more serious work to do. We’ve much more serious things to worry about. That kind of directionlessness will not be part of what Zanu-PF stands for.
“We’re surprised that you’ve already crafted an agenda for the Politburo when it meets. That agenda is approved by His Excellency [President Robert Mugabe] and the secretary for administration [Cde Ignatius Chombo]. They’re the ones who work on what the party will discuss and I want to say please no to agenda setting.
“We don’t discuss what you want us to discuss. We discuss issues that affect the generality of our party membership and how to assist the people of Zimbabwe.”
Cde Kasukuwere said social media was not an issue to the party.
“I want to say to the press please, please don’t misquote us and don’t turn around and make social media an issue,” he said.
“It’s not an issue for us here. If it’s an issue to you, let it be to you, but for Zanu-PF we’re clear on what we stand for.”
When reminded that President Mugabe in his official capacity as the First Secretary of Zanu-PF once implored party members from abusing social media, Cde Kasukuwere interjected and said: “Don’t create problems to say Kasukuwere has gone against ah, ah no, no, please I have said don’t agenda set for the party.
“Please, let the party do its work. If we are to discuss anything of that nature, can’t you allow us to discuss it quietly in our confines as a party?
“Why does it have to be the President said this, the President said that? Aah, aah, please when the President speaks we all listen to him, but don’t then go overboard and try and blow things out of proportion. The party is intact.”
Cde Kasukuwere said the party was ready for the 2018 elections and next week the commissariat department would be meeting provincial structures, starting with Matabeleland South.
He said the party was not happy with the kind of reportage coming from the State media.
“We want to call upon our State-owned newspapers to help build the party,” he said. Like I said, let’s not allow individual desires to become national desires. We’ve a country, we’ve a party, we’ve a leadership.
“I’m appealing to the press, please tone down the volume. We’re not excited at all with the amount of noise that continues to occupy front pages of this country. We deserve better news. We deserve better stories that unite, develop and move our nation forward. We’re making a genuine appeal to all the leadership in the media that let us build our nation.”
Cde Kasukuwere said the party leadership should disseminate developmental information on Zim-Asset and how the party and government were dealing with challenges confronting the country.